Hands-free hydration: The simple solution to stop patients dying of thirst
21:03 GMT, 7 July 2012
Hands-free: The hydrant water bottle clips on a bed frame or wheelchair
Last week, an inquest heard how a brain-tumour patient who died due to dehydration might have lived if he had been given a drink of water.
Now a patient who had a similar problem after back surgery has created a hands-free drinks system.
Mark Moran left his management job at Ford Motors and invested several hundred-thousand pounds of his own money to develop the Hydrant.
A plastic water bottle which lets patients drink through a long flexible tube, it clips on a bed frame or wheelchair.
‘When I woke after the operation my mouth was dry but I couldn’t reach my drink,’ says Mark, 50.
‘A friend brought in a container based on a type of sports bottle to strap to my bed.
'It was second nature to me as I’m a keen marathon runner but staff thought it was brilliant.’
His product is in use at the MoD’s Headley Court rehabilitation unit and at Stoke Mandeville hospital, and Mark has sold 20,000 of the bottles, which cost 12.95 when bought from his website.
Users include amputees and those suffering from debilitating conditions such as multiple sclerosis.
Medical intervention: Mark Moran left his management job and invested several hundred-thousand pounds of his own money to develop the Hydrant
It is also sold via the National Childbirth Trust website for use in labour and while breastfeeding.
‘I’m currently in talks with the NHS about the possibility of making it available on prescription,’ says Mark, from Bristol.
A study published in the Nursing Times showed a reduction in urinary and wound infections, dehydration and length of hospital stay for patients who used the Hydrant.